The transition to parenthood: Marital conflict and withdrawal and parent-infant interactions.

  • Cox M
  • Paley B
  • Payne C
 et al. 
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Considers the relationship between marital processes and parenting interactions in young couples experiencing the transition to parenthood. The authors longitudinally followed young couples from the prenatal period through the first years of their children's lives. They focus particularly on marital conflict and withdrawal and its association with parenting, indexed by whether parents showed warm, involved, sensitive responding to their infants. They find evidence that marital withdrawal, more than marital conflict, particularly undermines parenting processes that are important for supporting early emotional development. Their research also demonstrates the importance of understanding how negative family situations may differentially affect mothers' treatment of male vs female children. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved). (introduction)

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  • M. J. Cox

  • B. Paley

  • C. C. Payne

  • M Burchinal

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